While Kyoto is renowned for its temples and traditional shoin-zukuri houses, it also boasts some of the oldest breweries in Japan!
For more than 1,000 years, the rice wine (sake) has been a feature of Japanese lifestyles. As such, sipping some Japanese sake while tucking into one of Kyoto’s most popular meals, kaiseki, can be as rewarding as touring a Shinto shrine.
That said, here are 5 world-class brewery tours for people visiting Kyoto, Japan’s former imperial capital!
1. Gekkeikan Okura Sake Museum
Sake brewing only started flourishing in Fushimi in the 1500s, during the Edo era. Jiemon Okura started a brewery here in 1627. Gekkeikan is one of the oldest breweries today as well as one of the world’s oldest companies.
Visitors can learn about the company and sake making at the museum. On display are over 400 antique tools—from rice boxes to wooden barrels—but the most charming artifacts include the brewery’s 19th-century bottles, promotional products, and packaging.
Visitors finish the tour by tasting brewery products available only at the museum, including the crisp and dry “Tama-no-Izumi”—the original name of the company.